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    Explore Hindu Kush range-2 – By: Prof. Rahmat Karim Baig

    Explore Hindu Kush range……2 – By: Prof. Rahmat Karim Baig

    The first and very short  part as an introduction was published with a panoramic view of upper Roshgol valley peaks and the upper Rosh gol glacier.  In this 2nd  part we shall give a brief description of  Udren valley that is rarely visited by trekkers and climbers despite its high peaks and the longest glacier of this mountain chain, stretching to 32 km with its source at the bottom of Nowshaq’s north face. This glacier is called DARBAND glacier because in the long past,  at a certain point about 6000m, there was a way to cross the ridge into the Wakhan valley as the  folklore is related. It is mesmerizing to view the winding long stream of Darband glacier from Udren Pass.

    The highest peaks > 7000m lying in this valley are Nowshaq, Istor O Nal, Noghbaisun Zom,  Shingeik Zom, and Darband Zom and the glaciers from all these peaks flow northward and feed the Darband glacier while from the north side Udren Zom and Shakaur send down a huge volume of glacier to this main glacier. Moreover there are more than a dozen peaks > 6000m –all unclimbed – feed this glacier so the bulk rises enormously. It takes five days to reach the BC of Nowshaq north face and a strenuous task if weather conditions are good otherwise in bad weather the go is very bad or fatal. This valley has been left blank in the map issued  by ‘ Survey of Pakistan’   as the surveyors could not dare to trek over the glacier with poor high altitude dresses and gear.

    This valley lies parallel to Roshgol valley  and there is a pass ( 5300m) called Udren Pass,  which is glaciated but one side of the pass gets only snow that dries up by the end of July and trekkers can ascend to the top easily and enter Udren valley or vice versa. This pass is a plus point  to reach unexplored sections and side valleys of the High Hindu Kush in the months mentioned above. Trekking in both valleys is hard and only healthy persons can complete such a circular trek. For more info contact the writer.

    Prof. Rahmat Karim Baig


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